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Bed Bath & Beyond CFO Gustavo Arnal fell to his death in Manhattan

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Signage outside a Bed Bath & Beyond retail store in Recent York, Aug. 25, 2022.

Gabby Jones | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Bed Bath & Beyond on Sunday confirmed that its chief financial officer Gustavo Arnal died over the weekend, after police had said earlier that Arnal fell to his death. Investigators consider Arnal’s fall was intentional, but he left no note behind and didn’t say anything to his wife, who was home on the time, sources told WNBC.

“The whole Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. organization is profoundly saddened by this shocking loss,” the corporate said in a press release.

Arnal, 52, fell Friday afternoon from a constructing in downtown Manhattan, in response to police. The long-lasting skyscraper, known locally because the “Jenga Tower” or the “Jenga Constructing,” has greater than 50 floors of uniquely stacked apartments.

Emergency Medical Services declared Arnal deceased on the scene, in response to a spokesperson from Recent York’s Office of the Deputy Commissioner, the general public information office for town’s police department.

A NYPD spokesperson tells CNBC it’s as much as the Medical Examiner’s Office to make a final determination concerning the reason for death. At this stage, the investigation stays ongoing. 

Arnal joined Bed Bath in 2020 from London-based cosmetics company Avon, just after the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. He also spent 20 years at Procter & Gamble. In Bed Bath’s statement on Sunday, the corporate noted that Arnal “was instrumental in guiding the organization throughout the coronavirus pandemic.”

Since joining Bed Bath, Arnal made several purchases and sales of company stock. Last month, he sold greater than 55,000 shares at prices starting from $20 per share to $29.95 per share, for a complete $1.23 million, in response to a filing. Those sales were made as a part of a trading plan he had signed in April. The document also noted he still held 255,396 shares after those latest sales.

Bed Bath’s recent struggles

Bed Bath’s stock is down 43% this yr — and about 90% from its all-time high.

Arnal died days after the corporate announced plans to shut 150 stores of its “lower producing” namesake stores. The Recent Jersey-based retailer also said it might be cutting 20% of its staff and added that it had secured greater than $500 million in recent financing, including a loan.

The associated fee-cutting measures come as Bed Bath’s core business continues to struggle. The corporate disclosed continuing slowing sales on Wednesday, with same-store sales dropping 26% for the three-month window ended Aug. 27 — a much bigger drop than in previous quarters. 

Some analysts say that while the turnaround plan announced Wednesday will improve the corporate’s liquidity position, it won’t be sufficient to save lots of Bed Bath’s business. Raymond James downgraded the stock Thursday, saying that the fee cuts and recent financing “only kicks the can down the road.” 

Bed Bath is one in all the general public firms swept up within the so-called “meme trade,” which sees stocks experience wild price swings based on social media hype amongst retail investors. In August, Bed Bath had multiple days with price moves of greater than 20%.

In mid-August, activist investor Ryan Cohen, a serious Bed Bath shareholder, exited his position. Cohen’s RC Ventures sold its Bed Bath holdings at a spread of costs between $18.68 per share and $29.22 per share. After the sale, the stock plummeted 40%.

Bed Bath also faces a category motion lawsuit recently filed within the District of Columbia, accusing it of misrepresenting its value and profitability. Arnal is called within the suit, as is Cohen.

Bed Bath told CNBC that it might not comment on litigation. In an SEC filing from Aug. 31, the corporate noted that it was “evaluating the criticism” but that based on current knowledge, it believed the claims were “without merit.”

In the event you are having suicidal thoughts, contact the Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988 for support and assistance from a trained counselor.

This can be a developing story. Please check back for updates.

— Additional reporting by CNBC’s Dan Mangan.

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